Approximate Age: Late 30’s early 40’s
Approximate Lifting Strength: Average building
Powers and Abilities: symbiotic suit, manipulation of Necroplasm, Military training, Firearms proficiency, various other Divine and Infernal powers.
Created By: Todd McFarlane
Debut: Spawn 1, (May 1992)
Portrayed on Screen By: Michael Jai White
Fan Casting: Idris Elba, Michael Jai White
Al Simmons, agent of the CIA, began to question his superiors and because of this, he was killed by Jason Wynn (his boss) and Chapel (his friend). Simmons’s death was only the beginning, however. His soul was sent to Hell, and Al made a deal with Malebolgia so that he could return to earth and see his wife again. Malebolgia agreed to the bargain, but returned Simmons to earth with no memory of his former life. Instead, Al discovered that he was now clad in a symbiotic suit and could wield the power of Hell. While discovering his new abilities, and piecing together his old memories, the newly dubbed “Spawn” encountered the demon known as Violator, a small clown like creature. Spawn’s early battles represented his anti-hero attitude, fighting pedophiles, mob men, and other criminals. Later, he would encounter Angela, an angel (very creative) who hunted Spawns for sport. This was his first encounter with the forces of Heaven. Spawn would go on to fight in the apocalypse (cool) and team up with Batman (more cool). Spawn has also gained and lost more powers than Superman has even considered having. Spawn is, overall, a very awesome character.
Todd McFarlane, however, is not. Back in the real world, Todd McFarlane has been involved in several legal disputes over Spawn and Spawn-related characters. In 2002, McFarlane was involved in a suit over the rights to Cogliostro, Angela, and Medieval Spawn, characters co-created by author Niel Gaiman. The lawsuit came about when McFarlane stopped paying royalties to Gaiman, denying him and rights as co-creator. This was followed by a 2004 verdict against McFarlane for using hockey player Tony Twist’s name and likeness in the creation of McFarlane’s mob boss Tony Twist. McFarlane is also involved in a suit with former friend Al Simmons (Sound familiar?) over his new book “The Art of Being Spawn.”